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“relaxing site - but bsasic”

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River Valley Holiday Park
Sunderland, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
53 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 46 helpful votes
“relaxing site - but bsasic”
Reviewed August 30, 2013

My husband and I stayed here for a week in August with our 3 children (4,10,14). We used it as a base to explore Co. Wicklow.

We had booked a 3 bedroom caravan.

First impressions of the site were not good - it stated it was 4 star - but it definitely was not the 4 star sites I am used to in France!! On entering the caravan I was impressed with the size but felt it was a little dated and in need of renovation / new curtains seat covers!! As you walk around the site you can se where they are updating it.

The site is basic (1980's style play park), launderette, pub with bistro, games facilities (football, golf, tennis, archery and shooting etc). It also has a little farm/pets corner.

As the week progressed my impression of the park rose - the children were having a great time playing out and going to the kids clubs (farm experience, craft, magician, video night, sports) which meant myself and husband could relax for an hr or 2.

The staff were helpful and the kids staff were great (you did have to pay extra for the kids cubs)

The location of the site was great for exploring Co Wicklow - and there was plenty to do in the surrounding area. If you have children a visit to Clara Lara fun park is a must. We did farms, and lots of walks, and of course a visit to Ballykissange;!!

There is no shop on site - but just across the road in the village there is one so easy to get basics. We did not eat out (other than Fitzpatrick's) so cant comment on the food on site (bistro and chip shop in village).

Other people have commented on the site being too busy - but we did not feel this. Yes there was a ready stream of people coming and going - but the noise levels were acceptable and i never felt crowded,. The noise on an evening was also good.

This park is a good example of not to take things at face value. It was a great park in beautiful surroundings, perfect for exploring the surrounding areas. I would recommend it to anyone going to this area.

  • Stayed August 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
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Helpful?
2 Thank nicky r
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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  • English first
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English first
Dublin, Ireland
Level Contributor
71 reviews
19 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 54 helpful votes
Reviewed August 29, 2013

My wife& myself have not camped in 30 odd years so you might say we are born again campers. We headed down to River Valley Holiday park on the recommendation of my sister & neice who had stayed for 2 weeks over the summer & because our very young granchildren wanted an adventure. Now my idea of sluming it would be to stay in a 2 star hotel, so sleeping for a couple of nights in a tent was not really on my agenda But what do ya do when those little eyes plead with you and say "Grandad, will you come camping with us". Call me soft if you will but I caved. No question of the wife caving, she was already packed & looking forward to it. Despite my lukewarm feelings towards camping my review will be objective.
The campsite is huge, field after field with various modes of accomodation from 2/3 man tents (like ours), to glamping huts for the softies to large mobile homes. The park is well maintained, for the best part clean. The staff were welcoming, the weather less so when we arrived.
The Facility block is kept spotless & is large enough to accomodate its vast clientel. Showers, wc's, kitchens if you need them, wash up facilities, all clean & well maintained.
The pitches were adequate with smaller pithes for tents etc. I mentioned the staff were welcoming, it has to be said that some of the more experience travellers & hliday home owners were lovely, offered assistance if we needed it & we felt very comfortable in the environment.
The negatives: Not a huge problem but we were pitched near a footpath & on our first night we had kids cycling by the tents all evening (not a problem) but as the curfew time passed, the cycling didn't stop until well after the time. Now this would not have been a problem if you had older kids but one of my grand daughters is just 13 months old & trying to get her to sleep was an effort but trying to keep her asleep was more difficult what with kids playing, as they do, with a lot of noise and well after the curfew. So the curfew was not adhered to. Disappointing to say the least. Parents are aware of the rules, they ignored them & there was no enforcement of the rules.Then at around 1am we had the neighbours returning from the pub & the shouting around the area was a pain in the butt. All we are thinking of is the kids been woken up. As I was awake I decided to pay a visit to the facility block as you do. Lord it was like Temple Bar with regard to the number of teenagers hanging around the place. But to be fair, they are teenagers, they were not unruly or particularly noisy, were not anti social in any manner, but the girls just didn't feel comfortable using the facility during the night.
Our second night was much quieter, thankfully, & the cycling seemed to stop a little earlier but then again, around 10pm we had a walkthrough the area by the security guard & perhaps this helped.
Other negatives for us, NONE of the footpaths are wheelchair friendly. My eldest grandson uses a wheelchair but the footpaths were too high with no access points. He is only 7 years old and he was unable to negotiate the footpaths which meant he would have had to use the roadway if unaccompanied.
As saidearlier, the site is huge, therefore there were a lot of people around and a lot of traffic movement. Some motorists travelled the roadway too fast. The site has a great playground for the kids. Perfect if you are happy to let the kids roam the site amusing themselves and many do. But if you have smaller children such as we did, there was nowhere for the younger kids to run around that was safe due to traffic etc. What would be needed,in my opinion,would be a secured area with a couple of playground attractions, where you could let the kids loose but accompanied by a parent or adult.
Off Site: there was the overpriced takeaway & the pub. We visited the pub for a Saturday evening game on tv. Found the staff great, service was good, not over priced for drink, just a tad expensive for the bar food but not a rip off.
Summary: well maintained site, clean. Noise levels/curfew not adhered to (by the parents, who are responsible for their children) & not enforced. Facilities excellent, tennis courts etc. Overall an interesting weekend if you would like to try camping. As stated staff were professional & approachable. I'll won't say never again as I the kids loved it & no doubt they will ask us along next year. We were near enough first time campers & we learned a lot with regard to being organised & should we decide to camp again then we may consider River Valley but more than likely might look elswhere perhaps nearer the sea.

  • Stayed August 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
4 Thank Tom C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Newcastle upon Tyne, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
7 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
Reviewed August 28, 2013

We recently spent a couple of weeks at River Valley as a base to explore Wicklow and surrounding areas. Overall, the campsite was in a nice setting with good facilities and the staff were very friendly and accommodating. The problem was the weekends! During the week the campsite was busy but with space to move around and reasonably low noise levels at night. At weekends, I can only describe the campsite as being like a refugee camp. Some campers just took the mick with the amount of space they took up on small pitches with three and four tents and gazebos aswell as a number of cars blocking roads etc. We felt extremely hemmed in on a number of occasions and witnessed people with caravans and mobile homes having great difficulty negotiating cars just dumped on the roads. When asked to move people were just plain ignorant and grumbling. There were rules for noise etc but I think that there were simply far too many people being allowed on site at the weekends. One final thing is that the takeaway was very overpriced and the quantities very small. We found an excellent Chinese Takeaway down by the harbour in Wicklow town which was half the price for double the amount of food. Although in general the site was good and the facilities good, we will not stay here again due to the overcrowding and the general ignorance of some of the campers!

  • Stayed August 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank StuartJ67
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Dublin, Ireland
Level Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed August 26, 2013

Went to River valley for the last weekend before the kids went back to school - unfortunately so did a lot of other people also, so the campsite was packed. As it happened, this meant we were located in an 'overflow' area beside the golf course, which was really nice as it was away from the busy 'family' camping area, so was much quieter. The kids loved the activities (archery/airsoft) and the new trail up into the hills is a nice addition.The on-site animals were also popular (particular feeding the donkeys). The toilet block was one of the best I've seen, even if it was a bit of a walk from the site. Overall, I was very happy with the stay and much preferred it over the nearby Hidden Valley. I will be back again next Summer.

  • Stayed August 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank heneas
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Belfast, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
12 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
Reviewed August 25, 2013

Recently stayed for a week in a mobile home at this site with 3 young children. Good facilities and activities though a little pricey when multiplied by 3 with most being 5 euros per child for an hour. We ate out locally every night and the restaurant on site was no more or less expensive than any other place( despite other reviews on here) , food and service were both good. A minor maintenance problem in our mobile home was dealt with quickly and efficiently when reported and noise levels were well under control and appropriate for those with young families like us.

  • Stayed August 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Brid S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Dublin, Ireland
Level Contributor
4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed August 25, 2013

Just back from spending one night (thankfully no more) at this campsite. I agree with previous posts about kids running wild until all hours. The security guard did come around at 11:00 and the site quietened down for a brief spell after he left. However, the noise levels soon picked up again and continued until after 3:00 a.m. only to be broken again at 5:00 a.m. by the crows picking over the rubbish bins. The security guard made just the one appearance at 11:00 and wasn't seen or heard from after that.
The site itself is pretty unattractive - a grass verge alongside a tarmac road which was a bit like camping in your own driveway. No trees and very little open space outside of the playground for kids to play a game of football or hurling. The site is very much geared towards organised activities which is not in itself a bad thing, but a bit more open space where kids can play naturally would be good. The showers and toilets were clean and the staff made a good attempt to keep the site itself clean. However, there was a lot of litter around the site, the entrance to the site, the bin area and some people even managed to throw litter over the fence into the petting area.
The staff were friendly but the clientele were not the chatty, friendly type that you normally encounter on camping trips. The litter, lack of consideration and supervision of the kids was unlike anything I have encountered in my years of camping. Maybe the on-site pub has something to do with it.

  • Stayed August 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
6 Thank Mazo_70
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed August 22, 2013

Initally I was a bit worried about our stay on this park from the reviews I read that kids were running wild at night time and making a lot of noise but from my experience I did not see this at all ,in fact the security men were very vigilent and did not put up with any nonsense and actually I felt kids are very safe on this site, after all it is a family run park and they know what is expected from visitors with small children.     I thought the location and setting were perfect with lots of activities on site with very friendly and helpful staff.  The toilet and shower block were kept clean at all times and the restaurant and bar food was very good and convenient.   I have travelled extensively around the country and abroad and conclude by saying this park is simply the best.

  • Stayed July 2013
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank mum0110
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about River Valley Holiday Park

Property: River Valley Holiday Park
Address: Redcross Village, Ireland
Location: Ireland > Province of Leinster > County Wicklow > Redcross Village
Amenities:
Kitchenette Restaurant
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 2 Specialty Lodging in Redcross Village
Number of rooms: 70
Also Known As:
River Valley Holiday Park Hotel Redcross Village
River Valley Holiday Park Redcross Village, Ireland - County Wicklow

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